Archive - December 2014

1
2014 NFL Playoffs: Who Will Earn a Spot Atop the AFC?
2
NFL Week 16: The Beginning of the End
3
Share the Excitement of Your Holiday with Fanatics Authentic for a Chance to Win!
4
San Diego Padres – From Worst to First?
5
Toronto Raptors – The New Beast of the East?
6
The Fanatics Authentic Spotlight Collection
7
A Future Star Arrived at Fanatics Authentic – The Odell Beckham Jr. Collection
8
Top 10 Sports Gifts for the Holidays
9
Product Feature: Game-Used Nick Foles Autographed Eagles Hat

2014 NFL Playoffs: Who Will Earn a Spot Atop the AFC?

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The 2014 NFL regular season has come to an end and the usual suspects once again find themselves back in the AFC playoff picture. Four of the six AFC teams that appeared in the playoffs a year ago have once again earned a spot in the postseason and are looking to bring the Vince Lombardi Trophy back to their conference.

Much like a year ago, the New England Patriots and Denver Broncos will be resting for the first week of the playoffs. New England didn’t exactly start the season off on the right foot, with blowout losses to the Miami Dolphins and Kansas City Chiefs, both of which missed out on the playoffs this year. But if football fans have learned anything about the Patriots in the past decade, it’s that Tom Brady and Bill Belichick won’t stand for anything short of greatness. The future Hall of Fame quarterback ultimately led New England to a 12-4 record and a chance to bring the Pats their first Lombardi Trophy since 2004. Much like fine wine, Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning only gets better with age. Last seasons MVP and AFC Champion threw for 39 touchdowns and 4,727 yards in 2014 and brought Denver to the playoffs yet again. With the deepest receiving core in the NFL, the Broncos seek revenge for the beat down they were handed in Super Bowl XLVIII.

An AFC North divisional showdown will take place as the kick off for the postseason as the Baltimore Ravens will travel to Pittsburgh to take on the Steelers. The Ravens snuck into the playoffs after a Week 17 win against the Browns. 10-6 Baltimore fought through ongoing criticism of the Ray Rice scandal to succeed on the football field without their star running back and earn a postseason berth for the sixth time in seven years. The Pittsburgh Steelers put together one of the best offensive campaigns in NFL history, averaging over 411 yards and 27 points per game. Wide receiver Antonio Brown led the league in both receptions and receiving yards as he looks to continue his success into January.

The AFC South champion Indianapolis Colts will host Andy Dalton and the Cincinnati Bengals on Wild Card Weekend. Colts quarterback Andrew Luck had a career year, finishing first in the league in passing touchdowns with 40. Luck has brought Indianapolis to the playoffs in each of his first three pro seasons but has yet to advance to the AFC Championship Game. On the opposite sideline will be the 10-5-1 Cincinnati Bengals. Cincinnati has had a roller coaster season of sorts, looking like a Super Bowl contender at some points and a bottom feeder at others. A Week 16 victory over the number two seeded Denver Broncos was exactly what the Bengals needed, giving them a huge momentum swing just two weeks before the postseason.

Gear up for the 2014 NFL playoffs and weeks of excitement as the remaining teams fight for the chance to compete at Super Bowl XLIX. From the dominant Patriots and Broncos to the lucky Ravens, no team is safe so be sure to cheer on your favorite AFC team on the road to Glendale as the AFC postseason battle begins.

NFL Week 16: The Beginning of the End

GiovaniBernardSpotlightAs the 2014 regular season faces just one week left of play, it’s do or die time for teams fighting to play in January. Week 16 brought an abundance of celebrations and heartbreak, as a number of teams clinched spots in the NFL postseason, while others saw their playoff dreams crushed before their very eyes.

The weekend kicked off with the Tennessee Titans taking a trip down to Florida to play the Jacksonville Jaguars, a battle of two 2-12 teams. Jaguars quarterback Blake Bortles was out-thrown by Tennessee’s Charlie Whitehurst, but still led his squad to a 21-14 victory. The San Diego Chargers kept their playoff hopes alive after a relentless comeback capped off with a late fourth quarter Nick Novak game winning field goal against the San Francisco 49ers. The Miami Dolphins and Minnesota Vikings combined for 41 points in the fourth quarter of play alone and the Phins capped off a great team win with a game ending blocked punt safety. The Houston Texans are still alive entering Week 17 with their big 25-13 win against a Baltimore Ravens team who may have just seen their playoff hopes expire. The Pittsburgh Steelers wrapped up their under-the-radar, yet extremely successful season by clinching a playoff berth against a talented Kansas City Chiefs team. The New England Patriots avoided a late scare from Geno Smith and the New York Jets and won the AFC East battle 17-16 en route to clinching the number one seed for AFC playoffs. The Cinderella Story of the Buffalo Bills just ended, as the lowly Oakland Raiders ended Kyle Orton and the Bills season with a 26-24 upset victory. In a Monday Night showdown, rookie Jeremy Hill torched the Denver Broncos with 147 rushing yards as the Cincinnati Bengals clinched their fourth straight playoff berth with a big victory.

OBSpotlightMeanwhile in the NFC, a Washington Redskins team in shambles somehow found a way to defeat their division rival Philadelphia Eagles and virtually eliminate them from postseason contention. Although the New York Giants and Saint Louis Rams had nothing to play for, G-Men rookie Odell Beckham Jr. put together yet another jaw dropping performance with 148 yards and two touchdowns in a 10-point New York win. The Jimmy Clausen-era in the Windy City was short lived, but relatively successful by the 2014 Bears terms. Jay Cutler’s quarterback replacement threw for two touchdowns and kept the game with the division leading Detroit Lions close despite a loss. One star quarterback entered the game as another left it as Cam Newton returned to the field to lead the Carolina Panthers to victory against a Cleveland Browns team that saw rookie quarterback Johnny Manziel get sidelined with an injury early in the game. Even though both teams were well-below .500, the Atlanta Falcons and New Orleans Saints we’re duking it out for a shot at the NFC South division crown last Sunday. Despite Drew Brees storied reputation, Matt Ryan performed best when it mattered the most as he led Atlanta to a 30-14 win. Aaron Rodgers silenced critics who said he couldn’t play well on the road with a 318 passing yards and a touchdown in a Green Bay Packers blowout win over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers while looking to keep his name in the MVP discussion. The Dallas Cowboys proved that they may be the team to beat this postseason as they clinched the NFC East and smoked the Indianapolis Colts by a count of 42-7. In a battle of the bird, the Seattle Seahawks and Marshawn Lynch went “beast mode” in a dominating 35-6 win against the Arizona Cardinals and their third string quarterback Ryan Lindley.

Gear up for the 2014 NFL playoffs and a thrilling postseason because the competition between the remaining contenders after next week’s match-ups will be nothing short of intense. Don’t forget to invest in the future power players in the NFL and upcoming football stars by shopping Fanatics Authentic’s selection of unique NFL memorabilia with autographs from all of the league’s biggest names.

Share the Excitement of Your Holiday with Fanatics Authentic for a Chance to Win!

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Each year, the holiday season brings the thrill of opening gifts, and now, Fanatics Authentic would like to capture the surprise of getting a truly unique present, such as our autographed sports memorabilia. In exchange for the chance to win a really awesome prize, we’re asking that sports fans who receive a holiday present from SportsMemorabilia.com to share a video of themselves opening their gift.

Just upload a video opening a gift from SportsMemorabilia.com this holiday season to our Facebook page and/or Instagram with the tag @FansAuthentic to automatically be entered to win a free $250 gift card. At the end of our holiday gift contest, three lucky winners will be chosen from across all of our social media platforms.

 

For contest rules and more information or to enter your video, click one of the links below:

 

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Be sure to submit your holiday video before the deadline on December 31, 2014. Good luck!
*No purchase required to enter to win.

San Diego Padres – From Worst to First?

padresplaque For nearly a decade, the National League West has crowned one of three teams as division champion: the San Francisco Giants, Los Angeles Dodgers, and Arizona Diamondbacks. Absent from this list is the little brother of Southern California professional baseball teams, the San Diego Padres. Overshadowed for years by their high payroll neighbors the Los Angeles Angels and Dodgers, the Padres have yet to win a playoff series since 1998. However, San Diego has made major moves this offseason to bolster its roster and restore relevance to the once great Padres franchise. In a matter of weeks, the Padres made the changes necessary to assemble an entirely new outfield in hopes of taking home their first division title since 2006.

Outfielder Matt Kemp has solidified his name as one of the most talented players of the 2010 class. The former member of the Los Angeles Dodgers will make his new home in San Diego where he seeks his third MLB All-Star Game appearance and will bring the Padres lineup much needed power. In 2011, Kemp put together one of the best individual seasons imaginable, leading the National League in runs, RBIs, and homeruns. The 30-30 Club member is only 30 years old and will surely provide an abundance of quality at-bats for San Diego in 2015.

In a surprising swap with Tampa Bay, the Padres acquired 2013 Rookie of the Year Wil Myers. Myers was a third round pick in 2009 MLB Draft that made his Major League debut for the Rays in 2013. The North Carolina native made an immediate impact for Tampa Bay, capping off his rookie campaign with 53 RBIs in only 88 games. As he is only 24 years old, San Diego is counting on Myers to be the face of the franchise and supply a reliable bat towards the top of the lineup for years to come.

Most recently, San Diego locked up MLB All-Star Justin Upton from the Atlanta Braves. Upton only spent two seasons with the Braves after he spent several years on the west coast making a name for himself with the Arizona Diamondbacks. In Arizona, Upton was named an MLB All-Star twice and took home the first of his two Silver Slugger Awards. Known for being a five-tool player, Upton brings a variety of on-field talents to Southern California and provides protection in the Padres lineup for the newly acquired Myers and Kemp.

Entering the 2015 MLB season, the San Diego Padres will provide baseball fans with an entirely new roster of stars to root for and a huge threat in the NL west. Don’t forget to join the SoCal baseball club on their journey to finally bring home a division championship in 2015 and show your support for the upcoming team with authentic San Diego Padres memorabilia.

Toronto Raptors – The New Beast of the East?

RaptorsPlaqueStep aside LeBron, D-Wade, and Carmelo. While these big name basketball superstars still continue to grasp national headlines, it’s the Toronto Raptors that are the most deserving of the spotlight for the 2014-2015 NBA season. Through the first 26 games of the regular season, Toronto is 20-6 and has a stronghold on first place in the Eastern Conference standings.

Since the NBA expanded across the border and the Raptors became an NBA expansion team in 1995, Toronto basketball has been nothing short of an embarrassment. In the team’s nearly 20-year history, they have won only one NBA playoff series and finished the regular season over .500 a mere five times. The former home to superstars such as Vince Carter, Tracy McGrady, and Chris Bosh has been known more for their flashy jerseys and super-fan Drake than their on-court rather than success.

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However, under the leadership of new head coach Dwane Casey, things are starting to turn around up north. Under Casey, Toronto has improved in each of the past four seasons, winning their second division title in franchise history in 2014. Along with the intangible help on the bench, the Raptors are developing a few superstars of their own. In the past several seasons, few players have shined brighter on the court than Kyle Lowry and DeMar DeRozan. The former Houston Rocket Lowry has run the back-court flawlessly for the Raptors since his acquisition in 2012. Through December of the 2014-15 season, Lowry has averaged nearly 20 points a game and has been a key piece to Toronto’s success in Eastern Conference play. Lowry’s running mate DeMar DeRozan is shaping up to be a perennial All-Star selection for years to come. Since DeRozan was selected by Toronto ninth overall in the 2009 NBA Draft out of the University of Southern California, the ex-Trojan has shown significant signs of improvement in each of his six years with the Raptors and earned his first NBA All-Star Game nod in 2014. With the help of big man Jonas Valanciunas and the high-flying Terrance Ross, Toronto is very well on their way to back-to-back division championships and quite possibly their first NBA Finals appearance in franchise history.

Celebrate the success of the NBA’s first place Canadian team and their growth as a legitimate basketball contender with can’t-miss Toronto Raptors memorabilia. With an incredible assortment of authentic hand-signed items from Toronto superstars of past and present, NBA fans can celebrate the franchise’s all-time points leaders with memorabilia pieces from Vince Carter and Chris Bosh or cheer on current Raptors with an assortment of DeMar DeRozan photos. Be sure to shop Fanatics Authentic to find the perfect piece of Toronto Raptors memorabilia to take home for your sports collection or a unique sports gift for a special fan.

The Fanatics Authentic Spotlight Collection

parkerspotlightFanatics Authentic is a pioneer in the sports memorabilia industry that prides itself on bringing sports fans and collectors the most innovative collectibles on the market. With the launch of Fanatics Authentic came an impressive product offering that boasts traditional sports collectibles, including autographed balls and signed jerseys, as well as completely unique pieces and rare game-used items. Among these new collections of sports memorabilia is the assortment of autographed Spotlight Photos.

In the selection of Spotlight Photos, Fanatics Authentic truly showcases prominent athletes from across all major leagues and every piece is officially licensed by the NFL, MLB, NBA, and NHL respectively. The Spotlight Photo collection features high resolution images of the greatest athletes from all professional sports in various sizes, including 8” x 10”, 11” x 14”, and 16” x 20”. Each limited edition Spotlight Photo is a true dedication to an athlete and focuses the entire piece on that one player, also allowing fans and collectors to own one of the most original sports collectibles available. As a numbered limited edition product, fans that purchase the Spotlight Photo are buying rare items that only a few will have the opportunity to own. These high-quality photos of can also be framed in durable, protective black wood to complete the ultimate display. Every Spotlight Photo, as does every piece of sports memorabilia on Fanatics Authentic, is fully certified authentic with a tamper-evident hologram sticker, which is individually numbered and can be verified in an online database.

Courtesy of Fanatics Authentic’s limited edition Spotlight Photos, sports fans can commemorate some of the biggest names in sports with truly one-of-a-kind collectibles. With exceptional photographs that highlight each player and captures their greatness in action, many of these athlete’s individual career achievements can also be celebrated forever with specially inscribed Spotlight photos. From Tony Parker to Odell Beckham Jr., the Fanatics Authentic Spotlight Photo caters to everyone with its completely original product line of sports collectibles to honor both current star athletes and icons of their sport.

A Future Star Arrived at Fanatics Authentic – The Odell Beckham Jr. Collection

 

beckhamjrspotlightDuring Week 12 of the 2014 NFL season, a Sunday night game that featured the New York Giants and the Dallas Cowboys gave rise to one of the most unforgettable highlights in football history.With an absolutely remarkable touchdown catch, this match-up produced the game’s next big star: Odell Beckham Jr.

As the clock began to run down in the second quarter, with the score at 7 to 3 in favor of New York, the Giants were in possession of the ball and Eli Manning decided to go for it all. Manning threw the football to his new favorite target, wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr., and even while being pulled down by Cowboys cornerback Brandon Carr, the Giants receiver somehow caught  the ball for a touchdown. Beckham Jr. made what is considered to be the “Catch of the Year” by fully extending his right arm to make arguably the toughest catch of all-time with just three fingers. Completing what is regarded as one of the most epic catches ever in just his rookie season, Odell Beckham Jr. is in for a storied career.

As Odell Beckham Jr. continues to amaze football fans of all loyalties and continues to write his name in NFL lore, sports memorabilia with the young wide receiver’s autograph is a great purchase for anyone. Our exclusive selection of autographed Odell Beckham Jr. memorabilia features an assortment of Odell Beckham Jr. signed football and autographed Giants jerseys so fans can celebrate the next big thing in football. Fans and collectors can also take home a piece of history with a rare autographed Odell Beckham Jr. photo that captures the very catch that defined his career.

Check out some of the Odell Beckham Jr. collectibles from our product offering below or shop for these items, here.

Odell Beckham Jr. Autographed Football

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Limited Edition Odell Beckham Jr. In-Focus

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Odell Beckham Jr. Signed Giants Logo Football

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Autographed Odell Beckham Jr. Jersey

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Odell Beckham Jr. Signed Catch Photo

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Top 10 Sports Gifts for the Holidays

holidaygiftsMake the 2014 holiday season unforgettable with unique gifts that last forever and shop for authentic sports memorabilia to give that special sports fan. Signed sports collectibles are a great gift for anyone, from the casual sports enthusiast to the most die-hard fan. Sports are a huge part of life and hold a special place in every fan’s heart, so there’s no better way to excite a sports fan at the holidays quite like a piece of sports history. Skip shopping at crowded and chaotic malls for conventional presents, like electronics or clothes, and use our list of top sports gifts which features ten ideas for cool holiday gifts that can all be purchased online. Make holiday shopping simple this year with our list of best sports gifts for guys and top holiday gift ideas.

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Product Feature: Game-Used Nick Foles Autographed Eagles Hat

Foles_FlyEaglesFlyAs the official game-used memorabilia shop for several professional sports teams, including the Philadelphia Eagles, Fanatics Authentic has the ability to give sports fans and collectors the unique chance to purchase items actually used by players on the field. There’s no better way to take home a piece of the action than with game-worn collectibles, especially those used by NFL greats like Eagles quarterback Nick Foles.

With the 2014 NFL season at the height of excitement and the Eagles at the top of the NFC East as a serious contender for a long postseason run, Philadelphia has been the talk of football. Despite currently facing a collarbone injury, Nick Foles is the core of the Eagles offense and led Philadelphia to a commanding start to the season. Foles came into the 2014 season as one of the most dominant quarterbacks in the league, after setting a single-season record for a touchdown-to-interception ratio of 27-to-2 while leading the NFL in yards per attempt and posting the third-highest passer rating ever in 2013. Taking the Eagles record to 5-2 before his injury, Foles put his team in playoff contention and is expected to return before the postseason just in time to make a championship run.

NickFoles_GameUsedHatConsidering the quarterback’s success over just three seasons in the NFL, Eagles fans can honor the face of the franchise and collectors should look to invest with valuable Nick Foles memorabilia. Add a unique piece to your collection and preserve exciting moments from what has the potential to become a championship season for the Philadelphia Eagles with this Nick Foles autographed game-used hat. This Philadelphia Eagles cap that features the team’s official colors and logo was worn by Nick Foles on October 5, 2014 when the team faced the St. Louis Rams. During the Eagles 34-28 victory over the Rams, Foles went 24-37 for 207 yards, two touchdowns, and just one interception. Fully certified authentic with a tamper evident hologram, a game-used hat with a genuine Nick Foles autograph adds serious value to any collection and will rise in worth significantly throughout his career, especially if the Eagles manage to win Super Bowl XLIX.

Shop for this Nick Foles signed game-worn hat and other Philadelphia Eagles game-used collectibles, here!

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